Q: Sir, Do you have a best guess on how long a 8-10 lbs brisket at 200-225 will take to get done. I was thinking about 1 hour per pound. Is this close. thank you!

A: You can usually figure about 1.5 hours per pound at 225 degrees for brisket, pork shoulder and other larger pieces of meat.

Several things can affect this time such as actual meat thickness, wind, temperature and how often you open the door of the smoker. I smoked a 9 pound brisket a few weeks back on a cold, windy night and it took 20 hours to complete.

If you have a fairly calm day with mild temperatures and you can maintain at least 225 degrees and only open the door when you absolutely have to mop or check the temp on the brisket then you should be able to guesstimate about 13.5 to 15 hours.

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  1. Fat Daddy January 15, 2021 at 4:44 pm - Reply

    Fat never “renders down into the meat”. MYTH

  2. Andrew Scott Fulkerson July 2, 2020 at 11:50 am - Reply

    I have put fat up and down and do not see a difference. I have a WSM 18.5 inch and find the fat cap down stops the direct heat under drying out the brisket. Mopping regularly also helps and of course wrapping at a certain temp also aids in getting a moist, tender brisket.

  3. Booda September 4, 2016 at 8:28 pm - Reply

    I put mine on the pit at 2 in the afternoon…what time should I take it off ???

    • Syepheanevans August 4, 2018 at 11:39 pm - Reply

      6 am the following moring. Just a gestimate

  4. Robert July 3, 2016 at 4:09 pm - Reply

    Just learning on my smoker pit I bought at Academy

  5. Larry April 4, 2015 at 4:10 am - Reply

    I have a 13-lb brisket, which is too large for my electric smoker. Whole, it should cook for 20 hours. I'm going to have to cut in it half. Cooking the two halves together, would my cooking time be halved (9 hours), or what would it be?
    Bigger question — will cutting brisket in half render a tough, dry brisket?

    • Tim May 5, 2017 at 12:23 pm - Reply

      I did a 12 pounder last week and cut it in half turned out great I put it on at 4 AM by 5 PM it wasn't ready I had also put ribs in so I finished it off in the oven to be ready by 6 I also inject mine and wrap at 150 With that said it won't cut the time in half so start early enough you can always put it in an ice chest wrap up in towels if it is ready to early it will stay hot for hours but pull at at 190 if you do cause it will still cook

  6. tony February 28, 2015 at 4:32 am - Reply

    i never smoked a brisket before and i have 2 little brisket maybe about 2 pounds each i wanted to start off small before i get a big piece of brisket so how long should i smoke them for thanks

    • Bo January 29, 2016 at 10:38 pm - Reply

      Time is just a guestimate of when to check temp. Always cook to temp not by time.

  7. Justin July 4, 2014 at 12:53 am - Reply

    Fat cap should always be up for the first several hours so the fat melts into the meat

  8. David Myers June 6, 2014 at 3:16 pm - Reply

    Should you always put the fat cap down when smoking beef brisket? Thanks for any tips.

    • KC July 3, 2015 at 5:54 pm - Reply

      David fat cap always goes up. As the meat cooks the fat renders down into the meat.

      • Brian November 29, 2021 at 7:08 am - Reply

        fat does NOT render into meat, fat cap DOWN always for flavor

        • Jeff Phillips November 30, 2021 at 4:02 pm - Reply

          This is a very personal thing.. I cook both ways and have for decades and can't really tell much difference but that can also depend on your smoker and how the heat moves through it.

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